Contact: Ben Kolada
Online coupon directory vendor RetailMeNot, formerly known as WhaleShark Media, filed its IPO paperwork on Monday. A total of seven investment banks crowded onto the offering, which could initially value the company in the ballpark of $800m. Meanwhile, a recent high-priced buyout and a couple of more coupon deals that we hear are in the pipeline could make 2013 a breakout year for the online couponing industry.
RetailMeNot has grown dramatically since its incorporation as smallponds in 2007. Through organic and inorganic growth, RetailMeNot increased total revenue 80% to $145m last year. The company primarily did business as WhaleShark Media throughout its lifetime, but rebranded as RetailMeNot this year, taking the name of a startup it acquired in 2010 and whose websites now account for the majority of its traffic.
No fewer than seven investment banks have piled onto the offering, with Morgan Stanley taking the lead left spot. RetailMeNot plans to trade on the Nasdaq under the symbol SALE.
The midpoint valuation of recent comparable transactions suggests that the company could debut at about $800m, or roughly 5x its trailing sales ($155m as of March 31). RetailMeNot was valued at 5.6x trailing sales in its $159m sale to WhaleShark Media in 2010. More recently, we estimate that Slickdeals was valued at 4.6x sales in its quiet sale to Warburg Pincus at the turn of this year.
At least two other coupon companies will be closely watching RetailMeNot’s debut. We’ve heard that CouponMom and dealnews have also been in the market recently.
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